I would that I might with the minstrels sing
and stir the unseen with a throbbing string.
I would be with the mariners of the deep
that cut their slender planks on mountains steep
and voyage upon a vague and wandering quest,
for some have passed beyond the fabled West.
— J.R.R. Tolkien, Mythopoeia

Welcome to The Hopeful Wanderer

The Hopeful Wanderer (i Estelrandir in Tolkien’s Sindarin / Low Elvish language) is a blog by Zach J. Payne, sharing poems and stories and the everyday thoughts of a wandering writer.

Zach J. Payne is a poet and novelist. Originally from Southern California, he currently lives in Western Pennsylvania with great friends and a cute kitty. You can follow him on Twitter @zachjpayne, on Instagram @zachjpayne and @zjpoetics, and maybe on TikTok sometime @zachjospayne. You can find old poems and essays on Medium.

Zach is part of the Serial Killers, a small group of writers/friends teaming up to conquer serial fiction in 2022. You can find those weekly episodes at The Write Brain. His serial story, The Queen’s Peculiars, a high-fantasy CSI, will be published here.

Thank you for being a part of this adventure!